(The following content is sourced from various sites advising on the coronavirus. For more information, please see the end of this article for additional resources. Photo Credit: CDC)
As news of the coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to spread globally, many people have become concerned about contracting this disease. For cancer patients and survivors that have a compromised or weakened immune system, this concern may be greater.
Numerous publications have been released to the public about preventative measures that can be taken to stay healthy during this outbreak.
Here are some tips on how you can protect yourself.
Consider staying home and resting if you are feeling unwell and are experiencing any of the following symptoms: fever, cough, sore throat, headache and chills. If you feel that you might want to be at home for more than a few days, consider stocking up on some non-perishable food items that are easy to prepare, particularly if you are not feeling well. If you want to avoid the grocery store, consider asking a friend or family member to pick up a few items for you or take advantage of online delivery services. Many grocery stores offer an express pickup service where they will bring your groceries to your car for a small service fee.
Be diligent with standard hygiene practices. Make sure to use a tissue while sneezing and to cover your mouth while coughing, discarding the tissue after every use. If you do not have a tissue available, use your upper sleeve instead of your hands. Washing your hands often is another effective way to eliminate the spread of any disease. Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Hand sanitizer is a helpful option if access to soap and water is not possible. Do not touch your face with your hands, especially your nose and mouth. Where possible, wipe down surfaces that are touched frequently, including door handles and countertops. Do no reuse disinfectant wipes as this could spread germs.
Talk to your health care provider about any upcoming medical appointments or treatments. They may ask you if you are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above or if you have travelled anywhere in the last two weeks. Ask them if you should be wearing a face mask to your appointment. In general, face masks are not required for individuals that are healthy and can sometimes create further problems. They can create a false sense of security and can also transfer disease if not used properly. If you are showing signs of having the coronavirus, a face mask will prevent the spread of the disease to those around you. Please note that face masks should be discarded after every single use.
As always, we care for the health and well-being of our bladder cancer community and we encourage you to take care of yourself and your loved ones. If you are recently diagnosed, undergoing treatment or are a bladder cancer survivor and require support during this difficult time, please reach out to us by phone at 1-866-674-8889 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.